Monday, October 21, 2013

Can You Spare A Seat? 

Recently we moved my husband's grandmother into a nursing home.  The room she was moving into was very small, so we had to be very selective about which belongings she could keep and which she would have to get rid of.  After everything was sorted and put away, we had time to visit with her.

Only, there was no place to sit.

The room has a bed.  And then her wheelchair.  But not place for a guest to take a seat.  There is a bench in the hallway.  And some tables in communal areas.

Do we make room for guests?

In radio, we have our listener core.  They are familiar with our music, our announcers, our features.  How would a new person feel if they tuned in?  Do we take the time to explain who we are and why we do what we do?  Is there a place on the website that welcomes new listeners and gives them a place to sit for a spell?

In church, are we welcoming to people who have never attended before?  Are our greeters keen to new faces?  Are our regular attenders too busy socializing with each other to notice anyone new?  Do we promote where visitor packs can be quietly picked up, if the thought of raising one's hand during the offering is a little intimidating?  Most importantly, is our church's doctrinal statement readily available so visitors know what we believe?

In life are we open to new people in our life?  I once had someone tell me "I don't have any room in my life for new friends."  If only everyone were so blessed.  New people give us new opportunities for learning and experiences.  Every person has the ability to make an impact in some way.  Keep your eye open for the opportunity new friendships bring.

And be sure you have a seat ready for them.

Terese Main is a morning co-host at Family Life, a network of nearly 70 Christian radio stations across New York and Pennsylvania (  She also provides imaging voicework for stations in Florida, California, Minnesota, Virginia and Wisconsin (